Sunday, July 21, 2013


Since I have a good bit of Cymric or Welsh blood as well as Irish in my veins, I am fascinated by the country of Wales and all the wonderful legends from this area and these people. We are all familiar with the Arthurian tales, of course, and have probably visited Wales and neighboring Cornwall frequently in our reading, especially if we favored the likes of Daphne DuMaurier and the Brontes, among  the premier authors of the Gothic romance novel! I just added to the genre is a very small way with my new story, Dark and Stormy. See the prior posts for information on it!

As I often say, I am a creature of the high desert and believe I have lived a number of lifetimes in this kind of environment but the genetic memory or connection to the British Isles is also strong. I will probably never get a chance to visit that region since time is ticking merrily away and I do not see a strong chance of finding the fortune that would allow me to go spend the 'quality time' for the independent journey I would want to make. So maybe next time--as well as in the past!

Still I read a lot about the history, geography, cultures, legends and myths, and even modern realities in the Celtic regions. I do have a picture or two that I have collected, not mine of course, but valued items in my collection.

By the way, I have library of about 3,000 photos, perhaps a third or so my own and the rest 'pinned' from many sources that serve as a slide show screen saver on my computer. The selection is totally random and each shot is displayed for about thirty seconds. Even after a couple of years, I can sit and watch it for hours and do at times. But I digress.

Here is a shot of Welsh mountains. An odd thing I notice about the mountains in Scotland, Ireland and Wales--many of them are barren. It's not that they are above timberline like the high peaks of the North American chains that run from Canada through the US and Mexico and eventually rise again as the Andes in South America. I think the cause is a combination of centuries of grazing and timber harvest and the harsh winds and storms off the ocean that have scoured them bare over the eons. Still, they almost seem "desert" in their stony and rugged faces. This scene could almost be along the Pacific Coast, don't you think? Not desert in the cacti and sand image yet deserted and also with scant vegetation!

I also want to find a picture of Powys castle since a cousin's research indicates that my maternal grandmother's family, Wilcox, had ties to this region and the lords of that domain. If I do I shall post it soon! That family name was once Wilcockson or perhaps the sons of Will the Cock. Did that long ago ancestor raise poultry? Was he "the cock of the walk"? Who knows. The background of many surnames can be quite fascinating! And Wales has a peculiar tradition of names reflecting one's trade but used in an unusual way: David the Train, Lew the Swine, Dylan the Bard etc. reflecting a railroad man, a swine herd and a poet!

There is a totally silly little tale of "Oom the Belt Holes" about a leather worker who devised a clever idea of having a buckle that connected into holes on the belts he made to keep one's trousers secure and in place. The punch line is something like "Ask not for Oom the Belt Holes." I told you it was silly but I do enjoy the funny punny sort of "fuzzy puppy stories"--not quite the full grown shaggy dogs! An old friend of my late husband's had an innumerable collection!

And since I am celebrating Wales, I have to share a dragon! We all know the link between Wales and dragons! This was taken at a kite festival by Luanna Rubin  who runs the marvelous fabric and quilting site. I think it is marvelous!

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